Filmmaker Profile: Danniel Rodriguez

Former Film Studies student, Danniel Rodriguez talks about winning the MFDP grant, his work on the Oscar-buzz-generating Moonlight, and how FIU students can break into the biz.

FIU alum Danniel Rodriguez
FIU Alum Danniel Rodriguez

Danniel Rodriguez graduated from FIU in 2015. He has recently won a Miami Film Development Project grant for his second narrative short, Habana Boxing Club, currently in pre-production. Only 24, Danniel has a growing relevance in the local film scene, evidenced by his work on HBO’s Ballers and the Miami-based film Moonlight, which premiered to rave reviews and Oscar whispers at the Toronto Film Festival. He shared his experience with us and offered his advice on career development.

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MIFF’s Big Little Festival, GEMS, Set to Kick Off

The Miami International Film Festival is set to host GEMS, its annual fall mini-festival highlighting recent cinematic “jewels” such as Oscar contenders and award winners. The lineup features two foreign films set to compete for the Oscar: Toni Erdmann, a German comedy about a father-daughter relationship, and the Chilean Neruda, an account of the famous poet’s troubles in a politically fraught Chile. GEMS will be the first festival in Florida to screen these films. Continue reading MIFF’s Big Little Festival, GEMS, Set to Kick Off

Diliana Alexander: Professor, Filmmaker, and Producer

Diliana Alexander, producer, independent filmmaker, and the executive director of FilmGate, is challenging film studies students in her Magic Realism in Eastern European Cinema class.  The students are enthusiastic and have been able to approach her with the ideas they have for making films and other projects.

Professor Diliana Alexander
Professor Diliana Alexander


FilmGate
is a nonprofit organization that supports independent filmmakers and actors in Florida. They’re holding a creative conference in February that explores how new technology influences the future of storytelling like virtual reality, augmented reality, mixed reality, and mixed media.

I had the privilege to interview Professor Alexander this week. She has advice on the art of filmmaking and production for FIU students. Continue reading Diliana Alexander: Professor, Filmmaker, and Producer

Fall Talkback Series Kicks Off with Ixcanul

A vigorous discussion followed the screening of Ixcanul (2015, Guatemala and France) this past Wednesday at the Coral Gables Art Cinema. A diverse crowd, including community members, faculty, and students of local universities, and even a friend of the film’s director turned out for the latest in the “Talkback” series, a co-venture of the Cinema and the FIU Film Studies program.

ixcanul01CGAC’s Ben Delgado joins Andrew Strycharski during discussion

Continue reading Fall Talkback Series Kicks Off with Ixcanul

SCREENING AND DISCUSSION: IXCANUL

Join us for a screening and discussion of Ixcanul at the Coral Gables Art Cinema on Wednesday, September 14 at 6:45 PM. Dr. Andrew Strycharski, FIU director of Film Studies, will lead a conversation about the film to the audience.

In his debut feature, Guatemalan director Jayro Bustamante tells the hypnotic story about Maria, a young Mayan woman who lives and works on a coffee plantation with her parents right beside an active Volcano in Guatemala. A marriage to a plantation overseer has been arranged for Maria, although she is not sure if she wants to abide by her family’s traditions any longer, and believes that a brighter future awaits her somewhere else. She sees that possibility in Pepe, a coffee cutter who plans on migrating to the US.

Get your tickets here!